Tis the Season to Give Back

Cherokee Nation Angel Project

Guest Commentary

Published December 24, 2018

Cherokees have long held the tradition of coming together to support our families, friends and communities. As one of the most respected shared values within our culture, I am proud to say it remains at the forefront of the work we do every day for our people here at the Cherokee Nation.

During this season of giving and celebration, it is only appropriate to recognize and say thank you to the many individuals who volunteer, give their time and donate personal funds to support their fellow citizens throughout the year. These everyday heroes exemplify the Cherokee tradition of working together as a community and show our tribe’s love and dedication to all of our citizens.

Chief Bill John Baker

Our tribal and business employees, as well as citizens throughout the Cherokee Nation, continually exemplify the generous and giving characteristics necessary to uphold this vital aspect of our culture. The tribe’s corporate business arm, Cherokee Nation Businesses, incorporates this concept into the company’s mission of growing Cherokee Nation’s economic footprint. That success supports the tribe, our citizens, and the programs and services that positively impact Cherokee lives. As the economic engine of the tribe, all of CNB’s profits are reinvested into either job creation or social services like health care, housing, human services, career services and education.

CNB employees volunteer through the CNB Community Impact Team, engaging in a variety of outreach assignments across the tribe’s 14 counties. We have hundreds of employees who participate and they give thousands of hours of their time to wonderful and difference-making organizations like Iron Gate, New Hope Oklahoma, the Cherokee Nation Angel Project, and the Oklahoma Department of Transportation’s Trash-OFF and Adopt-A-Highway programs. They also coordinate events such as local school supply drives, blood drives and many other community assistance activities throughout the year.

It remains critical during the holiday season and upcoming harsh winter months that we, as a tribe, uphold our values of giving back and making stronger families and communities. This helps ensure every Cherokee Nation citizen feels the support of the tribe and receives a helping hand with necessities if they cannot provide for themselves during this time.

The people who benefit the most from this commitment to community are some of our neediest Cherokee Nation citizens, especially youth and elders. I offer my personal gratitude to everyone who steps up to fill the gap. God bless each and every one of you this Christmas season.


Bill John Baker is the principal chief of the Cherokee Nation. 

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